When it comes to consulting, GPA is an important factor for both students and working professionals. For students, a 3.6 GPA is the minimum requirement to ensure that they have no doubts about their academic achievement. However, lower GPAs don't automatically disqualify a candidate; a 3- or 2-GPA resume can still move on to the next round if it shows outstanding achievements elsewhere. For working professionals, the GPA is still important, but less important than for students who apply for consulting.
Consultants care more about their work experience when they hire working professionals. Nevertheless, a low GPA can still be a red flag in your application. To increase your chances of getting a consulting interview, you'll need a compelling story that explains why you have a low GPA. Companies want to know that if you're working on a difficult consulting project, you'll have the ability to persevere. The importance of your GPA in determining whether or not you will receive a consulting interview depends on whether you apply as a student or as a working professional.
If you have a low GPA, there are several things you can do to increase your chances of getting consulting interviews. Some students who have a low GPA and mediocre test scores choose to retake the SAT or GMAT to have a better chance of receiving a consulting interview. For less competitive consulting firms, you may be able to get away with not including your GPA in your resume if the rest of your resume is decent. Less prestigious consulting firms may have lower GPA limits because they can't attract the same level of talent that top consulting firms attract. If you're really passionate about consulting, you may have to settle for working in a consulting firm that isn't your best option.
Afterwards, you can apply for a top-notch MBA program, which will give you another chance to pursue consulting. In addition, since most consulting firms ask you to submit a transcript, recruiters can simply review your academic record to find your GPA.